Traditional text-based advertising – posts, tweets, and updates in particular – has one glaring drawback: it requires your audience to “buy in” enough to read it. While they may catch the odd word here or there even without intending to, you need some agreement for them to really absorb your message. Images, on the other hand, instantly capture the mind and imagination. That’s why Instagram has proven so enduring in both B2B and B2C marketing; it’s a fantastic medium for overcoming common hurdles between your message and a potential customer. Instagram story is a natural extension of this tactic, giving you the ability to add even more cohesive messaging to your images and Instagram posts.
A Visible Crowdpleaser
Even with multiple images in a single upload, photos or text in a traditional post tend to deliver a single message. While the curious might click through and explore, you’ll only have one chance to make a lasting impression on new eyes. Instagram stories are designed to do exactly what their name implies – they provide a self-scrolling tale that provides a narrative, rather than a few pictures that might be loosely linked. Stories also let you showcase the progression of an event as it happens – product testing, factory tours, launch day celebrations, and more. This draws in your viewers and encourages them to “stay tuned” – the payoff is only a few moments away, after all, so they’re far more likely to stick around for the conclusion of your message.
Engaging on a Popular Platform
If there’s a social media version of cognitive dissonance, it occurs when a company is on a platform that doesn’t suit their image, or worse, on a defunct platform. There’s a good reason that modern companies don’t appear on Friendster or MySpace – they’re not popular or widely used anymore, and a presence there likely does more harm than good. Instagram, on the other hand, is very hot – businesses are manufacturing items specifically to appeal to users (Starbucks’ unicorn frappuccino, anyone?) and encouraging visitors to log on. Instagram has cross-generational appeal, rooted firmly in memorable and eye-catching aesthetics. A good handful of Instagram stories will help you join the 500 million strong crowd of users on the app, and a few well-placed hashtags will ensure your products and services stay in the searchable spotlight.
Stories Only You Can Tell
Unlike a brochure or landing page, Instagram stories give B2B companies the ability to stay versatile, incorporating important B2B-centric information into them as it happens. Invaluable for trade shows, these stories can feature plain images, short videos, frames, and filters that will keep your company in the best possible light. They give your viewers and subscribers a unique view – your presence through your eyes, including your collaborations with suppliers and other providers, interaction with fellow customers, and excitement for new additions to your catalog or offerings. Stories also allow you to connect previously-taken Instagram snaps with in-the-moment images, letting you bridge large gaps of time to tell a more consistent narrative, cleverly editing out “downtime” to put forth a compelling public image.
If you’re thinking of using Instagram stories in your own social media marketing efforts, you’re already on the right foot for capturing impressive B2B market share. If you aren’t already on Instagram, be sure to either experiment with an “unknown” account to get a feel for the reins, or work with an Instagram-trained professional. That way, you’ll be able to focus on what’s really important: crafting compelling Instagram stories that show your business in the best light possible.